BASTROP, Texas — The driver of the 18-wheeler involved in a crash with a school bus in Bastrop Wednesday morning allegedly told authorities that he attempted to stop his vehicle before it hit the back of the school bus, sending 10 students to hospitals.
According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, the preliminary investigation showed the school bus was stopped at the intersection of Tucker Hill Lane and Highway 71 when the light turned green. The bus driver reportedly said that's when the bus turned right onto Highway 71 before 8 a.m.
The driver of the 18-wheeler -- who was traveling westbound on Highway 71 -- said he had a yellow light, and attempted to stop before hitting the school bus. He said the vehicle would not stop, so he "took evasive action" and hit the shoulder. But the 18-wheeler ended up hitting the school bus from behind.
Bastrop Independent School District said Bus 220 was carrying 20 students when it crashed. Ten students were from Cedar Creek High School, five were from Cedar Creek Middle School, four were from Cedar Creek Intermediate School and one was from Colorado River Collegiate Academy.
KVUE spoke with a man who jumped in to help the students after witnessing the crash.
""Anyone who's a parent would understand that nature. It's just an instinct," said Jerimiah Owens, who was on his way to work when the crash happened."
Owens said right after the crash he checked on the truck driver because other people were already helping those on the bus.
"Cause it was just chaos in the road basically everyone going everywhere trying to get these kids unloaded and safely off to the side where they're out of dangers way," Owens said.
Ten students total were taken to hospitals, Bastrop ISD said. Eight students were taken by ambulance while two were taken by their parents. Bastrop ISD said all of the injuries were minor.
Dell Children's Medical Center of Central Texas said nine children were treated there following the bus crash.
"The children sustained minor injuries and are currently being reunited with their families," Dell Children's said in a statement.
The bus driver was also taken to a hospital, the school district said.
"District staff were on hand at the scene and at the hospital to support students and their families, and we will continue to provide counseling and support upon students’ return to school," Bastrop ISD said in a statement.
Officials said the driver of the 18-wheeler was taken to a hospital as well, but they are not sure of the extent of his injuries yet.
Texas Department of Public Safety is currently inspecting the school bus and investigating the crash to determine who was at fault. Everything that has been reported so far is based off of the preliminary investigation. Bastrop ISD said the district and its transportation provider, GoldStar Transit, will cooperate fully with the investigation.
KVUE's Anavid Reyes said drivers should avoid the area and use FM 535 and Pearce as an alternate route.
The sheriff's office wants to remind drivers to pay special attention to the roadway when it is wet. Authorities also want to remind drivers to stop at red lights and to drive slower.
The district and bus company are cooperating with DPS as they investigate the incident.
Check back on this story for updates.